Sackboy Spices Up Costume Quest 2

Everything’s better with Sackboy.

Costume Quest 2, the well-received title from developer Double Fine, is coming to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 on October 28, as announced by publisher Midnight City.

The PlayStation-exclusive bonus will be a Sackboy costume but it won’t be ready for the game’s launch. Instead, it’ll be part of a free update released a bit later on; we don’t have an exact date but it should be ready “in the coming weeks.” But wait, even when you actually have the update, you don’t automatically have the Sackboy getup. No, you have to collect four hidden pieces to assemble it and only then can you don the costume.

It may sound like a lot of work but if you do it, you’ll be able to use the special power, the “Little Big Beat Down.” See? A reward for your effort! Costume Quest 2 will retail for $14.99.

Related Game(s): Costume Quest 2

Tags: costume quest 2, costume quest 2 ps4, costume quest 2 ps3

10/24/2014 9:38:56 PM Ben Dutka

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Ubisoft Wants To Make It Clear That The Division Is An RPG

Perhaps you assumed that Tom Clancy’s The Division was in fact an action game with some strategic elements.

Actually, Ubisoft wants to call it more of a role-playing game, and one that will supposedly offer “endless gameplay.” This is what art director Rodrigo Cortes told IGN in a recent interview, where Cortes spoke about creating a game that players will keep playing.

He said they didn’t want to produce a title that features a simple, straightforward story. When you’re done, you just put it on the shelf and that’s it. Instead, with The Division, the developers are prepping numerous ways to extend the longevity of the experience; there will be PvP, PvE, and “several progressions.” And of course, they intend to “heavily support” the game after it launches.

As for the classification, here’s what he had to say:

“For us, one of the biggest challenges is figuring out how to tell people how much of an RPG it is. It has shooting, and is shooter-like. If you look at it, that’s the whole point because we want it to be very immersive. But it’s not a shooter with some RPG stats tacked on. It’s actually a proper RPG from the very beginning. There’s deep progression when it comes to loot, gear, and levels and you’ll be able to customize every skill, do exactly what you want, and choose roles. So, that’s probably the biggest communication challenge. We want to make clear to everyone that it’s an RPG.”

So, there you have it. Get your genres straight for this one.

Related Game(s): The Division

Tags: the division, tom clancys the division, ubisoft

10/24/2014 9:31:45 PM Ben Dutka

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Are People Already Tired Of Destiny?

When Activision boasted that Destiny would have a 10-year lifespan, I had to laugh. Gamers are so fickle they’ve often completely forgotten about a game one month after it comes out.

But given the sheer size, scope and ambition of Bungie’s massive production, I figured it was possible. Just like any other MMO (which is what Destiny is; I don’t care what anyone else says), it can thrive on the ever-increasing community and constant support from the developers. It doesn’t have a subscription plan built in, though, and paid downloadable content will only get you so far. I’ve been saying for a long time that if Destiny really wants to keep going, it’s inevitable that you’ll see either a subscription service or microtransactions.

But that’s not the point of this article. As I predicted, the hype for Destiny has basically dwindled to nothing. We’re not really even talking about the Vault of Glass or anything right now; the people I know who loved it are already tired of it. Many are saying they’re more than ready for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Far Cry 4, because they’re “done” with Destiny. Obviously, we’ve got a big update coming in December but is that really enough? Gamers tend to move on pretty quickly and really, nobody’s talking about this anymore.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that millions aren’t still having fun playing it online. Maybe they’d rather play it than talk about it and if so, I totally understand. Still…

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Uncharted’s Opening Scene Comes To Life

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Dead Or Alive 5: Last Round Launching On February 17

Fighting fans, mark your calendars.

Koei Tecmo and Team Ninja have announced that Dead or Alive 5: Last Round will release for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in North America on February 17, 2015. It will be available in European territories three days later.

The physical and digital versions for PS4 and Xbox One will go for $40, while the PS3 and Xbox 360 iterations will retail for $30. The game will not be available in physical format for the older consoles, by the way. There are also pre-order bonuses, if you’re so inclined:

Putting your deposit down at GameStop will net you Ninja and Aloha costume packs (wearable by certain characters), while pre-ordering at Amazon and Best Buy will get you the Showstopper and Beach Party costume sets. The developers further confirmed that The Crimson stage from Dead or Alive 2 will appear in the game; it’s a multi-level stage where players can fight on the rooftops or in the streets.

Last but certainly not least, PS4 and Xbox One players can try the game out for free. After the title launches, you can download a special version of Last Round called “Core Fighters.” This bundle comes with four fighters (Ayane, Hayate, Kasumi and Ryu Hayabusa) and nearly every game mode. For more details, check out the game’s official website.

Related Game(s): Dead or Alive 5: Last Round

Tags: dead or alive 5 last round, doa5 last round, dead or alive 5 last round release date

10/24/2014 11:29:28 AM Ben Dutka

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Far Cry 4′s Latest Trailer Proves You’ll Always Be In Danger

Ubisoft continues its heavy promotion of the anticipated sequel, Far Cry 4.

Today, they’ve released the second part of their “Welcome to Kyrat” trailer series, and it showcases the many exotic locales we’ll explore in the game.

As you probably already know, you’ll be traversing some very difficult Himalayan terrain, but there are also dense forests and villages as well. It’s important to remember that when you’re out in the wild, you’re always vulnerable in some way. This is an extremely unforgiving environment, regardless of where you go, so you had best be on your toes at all times.

From the wildlife to ruthless drug traders, it seems like everything that moves could pose a serious threat. Hell, you even have to look out for avalanches! Far Cry 4 launches on November 18 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC.

Related Game(s): Far Cry 4

Tags: far cry 4, far cry 4 trailer, far cry 4 video

10/24/2014 11:39:53 AM Ben Dutka

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Early NBA Live 15 Adopters Can Land A Bunch Of Free Content

This is a franchise that has suffered through some tough times.

But Electronic Arts is well aware of this, which is why they’re offering an incentive to snag NBA Live 15 during the game’s first week of availability.

In fact, b-ball fans will receive $30 worth of bonus content entirely for free. As EA Sports explained in a blog post, early adopters will earn 10 Gold Premium packs for the game’s Ultimate Team Mode. This mode has proven popular in other EA Sports franchises, including Madden and FIFA, and it’s pretty self-explanatory. Remember, though, you’ve got only week to act; this offer is good between October 28 and November 6.

The blog post says this is a reward for all the dedicated fans out there, who have stuck with Live despite the issues. Don’t forget that NBA Live 15 is three weeks late, and that’s only a sample of the franchise’s problems in recent years. Said EA:

“You’ve stuck with us through thick and thin, so we want to take this opportunity to say thanks and give you a little something to help get your experience and your Ultimate Team off on the right foot. Since Ultimate Team is quickly becoming the most popular way to play online, we’re doing our best to help you get that little extra advantage up front.”

Here’s hoping this game was worth the wait, and that it’s a worthy competitor to the excellent NBA 2K15.

Related Game(s): NBA Live 15

Tags: nba live 15, electronic arts, nba live 15 bonus content

10/23/2014 10:00:24 PM Ben Dutka

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Anticipated PS4 Update 2.00 Finally Set To Land On Tuesday

They’ve been hyping it for a while, and now it’s almost time to download the hefty new PlayStation 4 update.

Sony has announced that firmware update v2.00 will be released for their new console on Tuesday, October 28. The update is so significant that Sony has code-named it “Masamune.”

It will bring a bunch of great new features to the system, including YouTube sharing, Share Play (a remote PS4 owner can play with you just as if they were in the room), a USB music player that gives you the opportunity to use custom soundtracks, and the recently revealed Theme support. They’ll also make some refinements to the home screen, which will now display the 15 most-used games and apps. There’s also a new way to add PlayStation Plus games to your account without starting a download.

This is a must-have if you’re a PS4 owner, and we appreciate anything that enhances the appeal of this slick console.

Tags: ps4 update, playstation 4 update, ps4 update 2.00

10/23/2014 9:39:44 PM John Shepard

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Assassin’s Creed Unity: "An Unparalleled Scope" Of Activities

The new Assassin’s Creed is almost here (in fact, two new installments are close at hand).

Ubisoft has released a new video showcasing the gameplay and specific quests available in Assassin’s Creed Unity and as creative director Alex Amancio says, the game offers an “unparalleled scope” of activities.

We’ll also get “dozens of hours of gameplay,” which isn’t too surprising, considering the sheer size of such an open-world adventure. There’s also eight more hours if you’re willing to pony up for the Season Pass. As for content, fans can go above and beyond the main storyline quests, as always; this will include treasure hunts, co-op missions and even murder investigations. The main character, Arno, can be customized in a special hub, and he can receive more training as well.

Game of the Year, anyone?

Tags: assassins creed unity, ac unity, assassins creed unity gameplay

10/23/2014 9:50:19 PM Ben Dutka

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Jet Car Stunts Review: Honestly, This Should’ve Been More Fun

If you tell me you’ve got an idea for a video game and it combines racing and platforming, I’m all in. But I add the following caveat: It has to present the player with intuitive, reliable mechanics, or it’s going to become a frustrating mess. Unfortunately, while Jet Car Stunts isn’t precisely a “mess,” it’s a touchy, under-developed game that only reinforces my deeply entrenched theory that games made for smartphones don’t translate well to real gaming units. On the Vita, it’s occasionally fun, but there are certainly better titles available.

The graphics are an odd mix of yawn-inducing blandness and surprising appeal. For instance, when a track is set before a setting sun, the lighting really shines. But when you focus on the tracks and cars themselves, you’re less than impressed. Again, because we’re talking about a title that originally released for iOS back in 2009, the detail is severely lacking. This goes double when compared to other stunningly beautiful Vita productions. I suppose this isn’t a deal-breaker for those seeking a wacky, lighthearted good time, but it’s hard to ignore. The effects are pretty pedestrian as well.

The sound isn’t much better, although the Vita iteration does capture the satisfying roar of the jet engine when your vehicle launches into the sky. The soundtrack isn’t exactly memorable and in some cases, the music is beyond generic. Then again, I wouldn’t want an insistent score interrupting my concentration, and some of the sound effects are actually comedic. I especially like when my car slams into the edge of a platform and breaks apart into pathetic pieces. Overall, though, the technical elements of Jet Car Stunts are mediocre at best, and really aren’t worth dissecting further.

So, there are these bizarre, broken tracks suspended in the clouds, and you’re supposed to negotiate them with a wicked cool vehicle. This jet car is aptly named: Shaped like an F1 car and boasting a powerful burst that literally allows the car to fly, it’s a futuristic marvel. The player can control the car’s direction and pitch when in mid-air, too, so it lends the experience an admittedly light piloting feel. There are three different modes: Platforming, Time Trial and Collector, and in each, you’ll have to master the ultra-finicky controls of these insanely agile cars. Practice makes perfect, of course, but there isn’t enough content to make that practice worthwhile.

The idea is relatively simple but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Firstly, you fall and die a lot. If you’re not perfect, you’re probably going down. Now, if the mechanics were spot-on, I’d be much more lenient; after all, a challenging game isn’t inherently bad. It only stumbles when the player has to battle unreliable controls in addition to that built-in difficulty. Now, maybe it’s just because the Vita’s analog sticks aren’t very big, and it’s tough to be pinpoint accurate with them. That’s a possibility, and I’ve seen higher review scores for the game on PS3.

Whatever the reason, though, this game just doesn’t fly on Vita (pun intended). It’s difficult to tell exactly when you should hit the jet boost to launch off a platform; do it too soon and you might fly right over the rings you need to pass through. Do it to late and you won’t even reach the first one. There’s an interesting twist to the game, in that you’re not really racing others. You’re basically just trying to get through the stage in the Platforming mode, and you get ten tries. There are 25 tracks ranging from Very Easy to Very Hard, but don’t think for a second that you’ll breeze through the easy tracks. Just about all of them take a fair amount of practice.

Time Trial is pretty straightforward and it has nothing to do with the platforming element. You just race around a variety of tracks, trying to post the fastest time. You can compete against the times set by your friends, and you can try to earn those elusive Gold Medals. Collector reminded me a little of Joe Danger, as you have to find all five gold stars on any given track; once you nab them all, the stage ends. It’s a nice little bonus to a game that’s in dire need of more content but again, the control issue gets in the way. Even when you think you’ve grasped the iffy mechanics, the horrid physics might still bite you in the ass.

There is no multiplayer to speak of, which only makes the experience that might lighter. There are only 11 courses in the Time Trial mode, even the toughest tracks in Platforming and Collector are actually quite short and it’s almost like the game relies on your constant dying to extend its longevity. Don’t get me wrong; there’s some fun to be had. It’s just a matter of your patience level and the platform you choose. If you’re going with the Vita version, I think you’ll be disappointed in the lack of accuracy and solidarity, and you probably won’t spend too long topping your best scores. Most likely, you’ll be happy just to complete a stage.

Jet Car Stunts doesn’t have the requisite depth and polish to be considered a worthy title for the PlayStation Vita. It’s a mobile game and yeah, it looks and plays like one. If you can get a handle on the finicky controls, the game can be entertaining and even rewarding. But the lack of content, bad physics and collision detection, and mediocre technical elements are impossible to ignore. I’ve got no problem with breezy little games designed to give us a breather from those huge open-world extravaganzas that are starting to dominate. I do, however, have a problem with any game that comes across as slipshod and unrefined.

The Good: Some fantastic lighting on a few courses. The cars perform decently when grounded. Solid track design. Can be satisfying and rewarding.

The Bad: Subpar graphical detail and generic sound throughout. Loose, finicky control leads to frustration. Terrible physics. Not enough gameplay content. No multiplayer.

The Ugly: “This is why mobile games should stay in the mobile space.”

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